Special Issue "Innovative Biomolecular Techniques to Assess Foods Microbial Community Structure, Function, and Dynamics"

A special issue of Foods (ISSN 2304-8158). This special issue belongs to the section "Food Microbiology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 May 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Barbara Cardazzo
Guest Editor
Department of Comparative Biomedicine and Food Science, Università degli Studi di Padova, Padua, Italy
Interests: food safety; food microbiota; shelf-life of food products; food spoilage
Dr. Nadia Andrea Andreani
Guest Editor
Department of Evolutionary Genetics, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Plön, Germany
Interests: food microbiome; medical microbiology; evolutionary biology; food spoilage

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

The composition of the microbiota, the dynamics of its modification, and interactions between microorganisms are fundamental for defining the safety and the quality of food products. Biomolecular techniques drastically increased in the last decades and improved in terms of efficiency, processivity, and applicability. The development and improvement of next-generation sequencing (NGS) platforms and their application to food microbiology allows deep microbial community definition directly on food samples, avoiding the culture methods and making it possible to identify unculturable microorganisms. Great efforts have been devoted to improving the microbiota definition; however, much remains to be done in terms of creating and improving bioinformatic tools able to manage huge amounts of data. The application of the most commonly applied metabarcoding, as well as more innovative metagenomics and metatranscriptomics, providing an exhaustive description of microbial communities and dynamics in food products, represents the main goal for the future. These will provide insights into the spoilage process, community structure of food products, shelf-life modifications, as well as investigating the effects of food additives in microbial communities of food.

Prof. Dr. Barbara Cardazzo
Dr. Nadia Andrea Andreani
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Foods is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • food microbiota
  • DNA metabarcoding
  • metagenomics
  • metatranscriptomics
  • bioinformatics

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
Austrian Raw-Milk Hard-Cheese Ripening Involves Successional Dynamics of Non-Inoculated Bacteria and Fungi
Foods 2020, 9(12), 1851; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9121851 - 11 Dec 2020
Cheese ripening involves successional changes of the rind microbial composition that harbors a key role on the quality and safety of the final products. In this study, we analyzed the evolution of the rind microbiota (bacteria and fungi) throughout the ripening of Austrian [...] Read more.
Cheese ripening involves successional changes of the rind microbial composition that harbors a key role on the quality and safety of the final products. In this study, we analyzed the evolution of the rind microbiota (bacteria and fungi) throughout the ripening of Austrian Vorarlberger Bergkäse (VB), an artisanal surface-ripened cheese, by using quantitative and qualitative approaches. The real-time quantitative PCR results revealed that bacteria were more abundant than fungi in VB rinds throughout ripening, although both kingdoms were abundant along the process. The qualitative investigation was performed by high-throughput gene-targeted (amplicon) sequencing. The results showed dynamic changes of the rind microbiota throughout ripening. In the fresh products, VB rinds were dominated by Staphylococcus equorum and Candida. At early ripening times (14–30 days) Psychrobacter and Debaryomyces flourished, although their high abundance was limited to these time points. At the latest ripening times (90–160 days), VB rinds were dominated by S. equorum, Brevibacterium, Corynebacterium, and Scopulariopsis. Strong correlations were shown for specific bacteria and fungi linked to specific ripening periods. This study deepens our understanding of VB ripening and highlights different bacteria and fungi associated to specific ripening periods which may influence the organoleptic properties of the final products. Full article
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